Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V1 #234

>From: Cathy Drzyzgula <milnor at netcom_com>
>Date: Wed, 09 Aug 95 04:47:55 -0700
>Subject: livebearers & plants?
>  I recently set up a 30 gal tank with the main purpose of propagating Java
>fern and possibly some crypts.  This is a relatively low-tech tank with 2
> 30W Vita-lites, an Aquaclear 200 and a Fluval 3 (for water movement). I
>added any fish yet.
>     My husband has long wanted to have some livebearer's, probably guppies
>and/or platys.  Will I have trouble creating conditions acceptable to both
>the fish and the plants? How soft can the water be for livebearer's?  I have
>read that mollies are good for cycling a plant tank--do you ever put salt in
>for the fish--I wouldn't think the plants would like it much.  Thanks for any
For the record, guppies and platies both come from moderately hard,
slightly alkaline waters and accept some salt in the water readily.
However, commercially available specimens of both species are hundreds of
generations removed from their wild ancestors and extremely adaptible to
any reasonable and stable water chemistry. If you wish to optimise your
conditions for your plants, do so. The fish will be fine. Any measurable
water hardness (i.e usually above 5mg/L CaCO3) is acceptable. Any level of
salt is acceptable as well, but 0.5mL/L or less is best for your plants. I
really wouldn't bother with salt at all. Mollies however are a bit
touchier...and require somewhat warmer water than is optimal for a plant
tank...about 27C. They are very susceptible to chills (they start to shimmy
after a chill) and so temperature control is very important to them. Again,
they don't REQUIRE salt, but I would add 0.5ml/L too be safe. This is OK
for plants.

internet email: Grant.Gussie at phys_utas.edu.au
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